Jamaica Blue Mountains—View from Clifton Mount Estate on coffee plantation.
Jamaica’s tourism had its beginning in the nineteenth century when invalids started coming to Jamaica to escape the cold winters in England and North America. The first tourist hotels were built in Montego Bay and Port Antonio in the 1890s. In those early days, tourism was limited largely to rich visitors.
Tourism began to prosper in Jamaica after World War I, when improved transportation made it easier for people to get from one country to another.
Jamaica’s beauty, warmth and hospitality are world renowned. Its mix of natural paradise and welcoming accommodation is value added to a diverse picture of its offerings.
Jamaica is among the world’s most favored tourist destinations. It attracts more than two million visitors every year. This country not only offers the wonderful perks of nature, but world-class attractions, as well, starting with the mountain chain, forests and scenic waterfalls, ending with the heavenly turquoise waters of its beaches.
The Blue Mountains are located between Kingston to the south and Port Antonio to the north. Rising to 2,256 metres (Blue Mountain Peak), they are some of the highest mountains in the Caribbean. The climate of the region is cool and misty with high rainfall. The soil is rich, with excellent drainage. This combination of climate and soil is considered ideal for coffee.
Over the past few decades, Jamaican coffee has developed a reputation that has made it one of the most expensive and sought-after coffees in the world. Over 65% of all Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee is exported to Japan.
Its north coast has become the island’s tourist center, the main points being Montego Bay, Ocho Rios and Port Antonio. Many tourists visit Kingston, but this city is most important as a commercial centre and the seat of the Government.
Hotels in Jamaica such as Round Hill (Montego Bay), Courtleigh or Spanish Court Hotel (Kingston) provide luxury services by comfort of its suites and an excellent staff.
On top of Jamaica`s natural beauty, its people are hospitable and welcoming. A mixture of the many ethnicities that have landed on the island’s shores over the past several centuries creates a very unique culture. From painting to music, language to food, the Jamaican people have so much to offer the world.
The culture is richly flavored by its cuisine. The aromatic spices of the Caribbean have allowed the island’s kitchens to create one of the most unusual fusions of flavors in the world. Most popular on the menu is Jamaican jerk, a marinade that can be added to almost anything, but usually meat. The spicy sauce includes many of the island’s native ingredients. Seafood is also prevalent on the island, but most truly Jamaican dishes, which intimidate most visitors, include cow foot stew, goat’s head soup and curried goat.
The most popular form of Jamaican music is reggae but there are many more. Jamaican folk music has come from many sources over the years. The most notable influence on many of the sounds found here is Africa, in celebrations of birth, death, and harvesting.
Jamaica is a beautiful and vibrant country, indeed, full of energy and culture. It offers something for everyone.